Malaysia disassociates from Asean chairman's statement on Rakhine

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has disassociated itself from the Asean chairman's Statement on the Humanitarian Situation in Rakhine State which was issued in New York yesterday, as the country is of the view it misrepresents the reality of the situation.

Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman said the Statement was not based on consensus as Malaysia had made known its concerns regarding the issues but they were not reflected in it.

He said the statement also omitted the Rohingyas as one of the affected communities.

"While Malaysia condemns the attacks against the Myanmar security forces on Aug 25, launched by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (Arsa), subsequent 'clearance operations' efforts by the Myanmar authorities were disproportionate that it had led to the deaths of many innocent civilians and caused more than 400,000 Rohingyas to be displaced.

"Malaysia expressed grave concerns over such atrocities which have unleashed a full-scale humanitarian crisis that the world simply cannot ignore but must be compelled to act upon," he said in a statement today.

Anifah was commenting on the Asean chairman's Statement on the Humanitarian Situation in Rakhine State, which among others stated that the Asean Foreign Ministers condemned the attacks against Myanmar security forces on Aug 25, and all acts of violence which resulted in loss of civilian lives, destruction of homes and displacement of large numbers of people.

The chairman's Statement also stated that the Asean Foreign Ministers were prepared to support the Myanmar Government in its efforts to bring peace, stability, rule of law and promote harmony and reconciliation among the various communities, as well as sustainable and equitable development in Rakhine State.

Anifah said Malaysia strongly urged the Government of Myanmar to end the violence, stop the destruction to lives and properties, allow immediate unimpeded access for the delivery of humanitarian aid to the Rohingyas and all affected communities, and resolve the Rohingya refugee problem.

He said viable and long-term solutions to the root causes to the conflict must be found in order for the Rohingyas and the affected communities to be able to rebuild their lives.

"We also urge Myanmar to fulfil its commitment to immediately implement the recommendations of the final report of the Advisory Commission of the Rakhine State.

"Malaysia on its part has dispatched humanitarian aid to Bangladesh on Sept 9 and will continue to do more," he added. — Bernama